Coach Larry Porter singled out a couple of guys after practice when talking with the media, including receivers Billy Foster and Jamere Valentine on the offense, and Mohammed Seisay on the defense. He also commended the secondary for their progress and again noted how the offensive line has fought through every day of practice despite being low in numbers.
"We are starting to have guys identify themselves as playmakers on both sides of the ball," said Porter. "Billy Foster has had a tremendous week and a productive week in terms of just making plays. On the defensive side of the ball, Mo Seisay is a guy who stands out as improved, and so again, there are a lot of different guys who are starting to step up and prove that they are better."
The offensive line only returns two players with extensive playing time including Ronald Leary and Michael Antonescu. This week the line appears to be shaping up with Leary and Antonescu, along with redshirt freshman Al Bond, junior college transfer Jordan Devey and former defensive lineman DeAngelo McCray. Bond and Antonescu have been working at center, as the Tigers look to replace Brad Paul, who was on the Rimington Watch list both his junior and senior years. A.J. Antonescu, who also redshirted last season, is getting a lot of reps, and has handled some of the center duties as well. Taylor Fallin, a true freshman who came in early from Hargrave Military, has great size and is expected to add depth to the line early on. The group also gained another previous member of the defensive line as Jimmy Robinson is learning the other side of the ball now.
"Although we are thin at offensive line, they continue to improve," said Porter. "They are taking a lot of reps and they aren't feeling sorry for themselves, and because of it, you are starting to see these guys improve and become more of a cohesive unit."
Coach Porter also answered a couple of questions about the progress of quarterback Andy Summerlin. He spoke about how Andy has stepped in as a leader and that he is making progress. Andy talked early in the week about how he needs to knock some of the rust off his arm, and that is something that Coach Porter touched on too as far as him continuing to get his arm in good throwing shape. But Coach Porter said he is confident that he will continue to get better throughout the course of the spring.
Before practice, Ron Leary spoke about how different the line feels this spring. As the veteran, he is looked to for leadership and he was candid about how much different the adjustment has been with the guys next to him being so unfamiliar. Check out the video below and how Ron is ready for the challenge of leading this line.